Cauliflower Pizza Crusts
Updated: Feb 2, 2022
I've spent years trying different ways to make pizza crusts that have higher nutrient content and are gluten-free and this is BY FAR the easiest and best method we've tried. Inspired by the new cookbook from Malibu Farm's chef Helene Henderson, Sunrise to Sunset, I used their method while adapting it and made my own dairy-free and vegan version. We hope you'll try this because I promise, with just a little prep, it is SO WORTH IT! They come together pretty easily and they can be made ahead, stored in the fridge, and pulled out for a last minute pizza dinner in a pinch!
Did you know that pizza has been called the #1 most craved food? Well, that is likely because of the cheese content. Cow's milk contains a sugar (lactose) that requires the enzyme lactase to allow proper digestibility. Many people do not produce lactase and so undigested lactose ferments in the colon, producing pain, gas, and bloating. Cow's milk also contains casein, which is also difficult to digest (casein in sheep and goat milk is a bit easier to digest). Furthermore, pasteurization removes many of the health benefits of cow's milk, including B-vitamins and gut-friendly bacteria including Lactobacillus acidophilus. There are many reasons to avoid cow's milk, these are just a few....
This crust is so delicious and 100% crave-worthy, we hope you'll be left feeling so satisfied and nourished that you'll ditch the Dominos. Even if you do decide to add a little cheese, you'll only need a very small amount to achieve a proper flavor balance.
All the ingredients you need on hand are:
1 large head cauliflower (any color)
ground flaxmeal (or sub eggs for non-vegan version)
Make Ahead Cauliflower Pizza Crusts (gf, vegetarian, vegan option)
Prep time: 45-50 minutes (including bake time)
7 cups riced cauliflower (~ 1 large or 2 small heads cauliflower)*
½ cup nutritional yeast
¼ cup arrowroot powder
¼ cup almond flour
¼ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
1 tsp salt
3 flax eggs or 3 eggs (or sub a mix of the two)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Trim the leaves, tough stem and wash the cauliflower.
Rice the cauliflower by using a large box grater or an s-blade with a food processor (like Cuisinart). You can also “rice” the soft stem.
Spread riced cauliflower evenly in one layer on two parchment-lined baking sheets and bake for about 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, move the bottom tray to the top and the top tray to the bottom and turn around. Bake for another 20 minutes (check after 10), until golden and starting to brown, being careful not to burn. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Once cool, use a nut milk bag or cheesecloth to squeeze any liquid out of the baked cauliflower (sometimes there won’t be any liquid to extract).
Add the cauliflower to a medium mixing bowl, along with the remaining ingredients and mix together with clean hands, until it forms a “dough.”
Divide and roll the mixture into 6 balls of equal size. Place them back on the same baking sheet and, using the other parchment paper, cover the dough balls and smash down gently, using the back of a large spatula or something similar until the crusts are about ¼ inch thick and even.
Increase heat to 375 degrees F and bake the crusts for 10-15 minutes, or until cooked through but not burned. Remove from oven, cool and store for later or add your favorite toppings, return to oven and heat another 5-10 minutes. Add any fresh ingredients (i.e. arugula) after baking.
To save the crusts for later, simply use the same parchment used for baking, and layer the crusts with the parchment in between. Store in a sealed container or a plastic ziploc, if needed, in the fridge until ready to use. When ready, simply heat your oven to 350 degrees F, place crusts on a baking sheet and add the sauce before heating. Add your favorite fresh toppings once it's out of the oven.
Now choose your toppings...
Favorite pizza sauce: Whole Foods 365 organic brand (no sugar added).
Favorite topping: sauteed mushrooms and shallots or shiitake bacon (shown) with fresh arugula or sprouts on top.
Favorite vegan cheese: fermented cashew cheese sauce (recipe below).
Favorite non-vegan cheese: parmesan or sheep milk Manchego.
*can be done ahead and stored in fridge for up to 3 days or frozen for up to one month.
Fermented Cashew Cheese
Makes ~ 2 cups Prep time: 20 minutes, plus 24-48 hours to ferment
2 cups raw cashews
1 TB garlic, minced (~2 cloves)
2 TB fresh lemon juice
2 TB nutritional yeast
1⁄2 tsp sea salt
1⁄2 cup filtered water
2 acidophilus capsules* (we like Whole Foods 365 brand)
Soak the cashews 6 hours (or quick soak in hot water for 1 hour).
Drain the cashews and add to a food processor (preferred) or high-speed blender.
Add all ingredients except probiotic and process until smooth. You will need to pause and scrape down the sides from time to time. You may also need to add more water to achieve desired creaminess, Taste and adjust flavor if needed (more lemon, salt garlic, etc).
Break open the probiotic capsules and stir into the cheese mixture with a rubber spatula.
Transfer to a glass jar and allow to sit covered with cheesecloth on the counter for 24-48 hours. You will know it’s done when you can smell a little tang. When done, store in fridge with a lid for up to one week (it won’t last!).
*We prefer using a single ingredient probiotic because some formulas contain prebiotics which can interfere with fermentation.
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